A new report has called on the government to scrap the stamp duty for pensioners, encouraging downsizing.
The study by the Policy Exchange found that single people aged over 65 own and live in 1.1 million homes in the UK with two or more spare bedrooms.
The report will suggest that new housing purpose-built for pensioners, or “ageing baby boomers”, should be built in order to free up housing for younger families.
Such changes “would allow more baby boomers to move into homes fit for their retirement, releasing family homes onto local housing markets; and give more baby boomers the chance to access housing wealth they have stored up in spare bedrooms.”
Jack Airey, who is the author of the report, said: “Although debates around the housing crisis tend to centre on the experiences of younger people, some of its most acute impacts are felt by older generations.”
“From unsafe stairs to poor heating, too many older people live in homes that limit their physical and mental health. Building more homes suited to older people will allow more retirees to live in a house that supports them to lead healthy and happy lives.”
“It will also give more people the opportunity to downsize and draw down their housing equity, releasing money for retirement, and saving money by moving to a home which is easier and cheaper to maintain.”
“The aim should be enticing people to move at a younger age, avoiding a more traumatic move in later life and lightening the demand for residential care homes. This, as we argue, can be achieved by increasing the supply of good quality, desirable homes suited for older people,” he added.
Philip Hammond scrapped stamp duty for first-time buyers on homes up to £500,000 in 2017.